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Indybay FeatureRelated Categories: California | U.S. | Animal Liberation | Arts + Action
Animal Rights Workers Praise New Children's Book on "Feral Cats"
In her new children’s book, Fairminded Fran and the Three Small Black Community Cats, author Dr. Linda Elder introduces young readers and their parents to an underserved theme in the children’s literary canon… the plight of feral or “community” cats.
NEW CHILDREN’S BOOK TEACHES ABOUT ‘FERAL CATS’
TO BE RELEASED ON OCT. 16, NATIONAL FERAL CAT DAY
Tomales, Calif. – Oct. 5, 2012 – In her new children’s book, Fairminded Fran and the Three Small Black Community Cats, author Dr. Linda Elder introduces young readers and their parents to an underserved theme in the children’s literary canon… the plight of feral or “community” cats.
Published by The Foundation for Critical Thinking, an educational non-profit organization, Fairminded Fran and the Three Small Black Community Cats tells the story of Fairminded Fran, a young girl who finds three, small, black cats living behind her school. Fran’s concern for the cats’ well-being compels her to find the best way to help. On her journey, she learns valuable lessons about the plight of feral cats from a variety of guiding figures – her teacher, the school’s maintenance man (who has a soft spot for ferals), and an animal welfare social worker. In the end, Fairminded Fran must use her newfound knowledge to convince her classmates to understand feral cats by using critical thinking skills to make better choices. The story is told through a critical thinking lens, as Fairminded Fran attempts to convince Selfish Sam and Naïve Nancy to think through some of the important issues facing community cats.
This new children’s book is being released on Oct. 16, in solidarity with National Feral Cat Day, a nation-wide day of awareness that aims to educate people about feral cats and the importance of the Trap-Neuter-Return philosophy. Many animal rights advocates and education professionals across the nation have already expressed strong support for the book as a teaching tool.
Elder, a leading authority on critical thinking, said that “we hope, through this book, to contribute to the literature on humane education while highlighting essential critical thinking concepts and dispositions. Through the book, children can see fair-minded critical thinking, selfish critical thinking and naïve thinking playing divergent roles in human thought. When students learn critical thinking in connection with important issues like those surrounding community cats, they come to see, increasingly over time, the value in fair-minded critical thought. When we as a society value fair-minded critical thinking in every domain of human life and thought, we will begin to create fair-minded critical societies.”
About the Author
Dr. Linda Elder, an educational psychologist, is president and a fellow of the Foundation for Critical Thinking. She has co-authored four books on critical thinking, and 23 thinker’s guides, including the Miniature Guide to Critical Thinking for Children and an accompanying teacher’s manual. The book is illustrated with colored pencil drawings by Kathy Abney, who holds a BFA in Fine Arts.
What People Are Saying About Fairminded Fran…
“Bravo! Fairminded Fran is an informative story that will teach children how to think critically… As a supporter of animal rescue, I give Fairminded Fran two paws up!”
- Brenda Fiorini, Teacher, Illinois public schools
Author of “Rescue Pup”
“Fairminded Fran is one of the only books that I have come across to directly address the issues surrounding and needs of feral cats… This book will be a great resource for young people…”
- Dezarae Jones-Hartwig, Education Manager
Wisconsin Humane Society
“This is an excellent book to spread the word on the issues community cats face as well as what to do if crossed with a similar situation. I highly enjoyed this book and plan on using it to discuss such topics with my students…”
- Nicole Latosky, Humane Education Coordinator
Geauga Humane Society's Rescue Village
One of the best things to happen to Marin Friends of Ferals was meeting Linda Elder… This educational story about her first encounter with ferals has taken our cause to the next level…”
- Janet Williams, President
Marin Friends of Ferals
To learn more about the book, visit: http://www.fairfranscommunitycats.org.
To learn more about National Feral Cat Day, visit: http://www.alleycat.org/nfcd